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Andrea Menard – Anskoonamakew lii Shansoon (Giveaway Songs)

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This compilation of prayer and community songs is called Anskoonamakew lii Shansoon, which means Giveaway Songs. Andrea Menard spent a year meeting and working with various Elders and Language Keepers across the Métis Homeland to create 12 new Michif language songs.

As the Métis were a traveling people, the Michif language is a “traveling” language. Most Métis were multi-lingual and communicated with the various peoples who lived in and near the communities and trade routes. These songs reflect the diversity and ways in which Michif has been influenced across the Homeland.

Andrea wrote this collection of Michif songs to preserve the language and to gift the next generation of speakers with a learning resource that becomes another teaching tool while honouring those who retained the language. As Andrea says, “A giveaway is a powerful statement of trust. To trust in Creator. To trust in reciprocity. To trust that good actions flow back to you in good way. I trust that these twelve giveaway songs will travel out in a good way for the betterment of our people.” Andrea also honours Elders Tom McCallum and Verna DeMontigny for providing the name for this collection of twelve Michif language songs. A heartfelt, kishchi maarsii to all of the Elders and Language Keepers for their generous contributions.

This album was created with the support of the Gabriel Dumont Institute and the Canada Council for the Arts.

For more information about the album and language keepers, visit Andrea Menard’s website: https://andreamenard.com/michifalbum

Watch video introductions to each song on the Gabriel Dumont Institute YouTube page: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLTK6TFLjjEcItpRfaBSFj8sBU2Q7yjclG

To listen online, watch introductions, and read lyrics, visit: https://www.metismuseum.ca/browse/index.php/13271

Michif Language Keepers
Graham Andrews
Marjorie Beaucage
Maureen Belanger
Jules Chartrand
Paul Chartrand
Verna DeMontigny
Tom McCallum

Track Listing:

Riel’s Prayer is a teaching song whispered to the Metis people from the Spirit realm. What would Riel want to say to you right now? He would want to remind you of who you are. To remember that you have the heart of the buffalo. And he would want you to be wary of the potential dangers in your midst.

Translated by Graham Andrews

Ayn Feu Shansoon (Fire Honour Song) is a song for the Sacred Masculine spirit. It’s a release song. It’s a song to honour the fiery power that resides in all of us, but was written especially to help men+, and those who carry Fire medicine, to find a way to express that fire safely. Sing this song and let it burn out of you.

Translated by Graham Andrews

Mahican Kita Oyoo (Wolf Healing Song) is a healing song. It calls out the pain and suffering in your heart to be released. Let it go. Release it to our Mother. And know the howling of the wolf is powerful medicine to help you howl out your own pain.

Translated by Tom McCallum

Kookoom La Leun is a prayer song for Grandmother Moon. It came to Andrea as an outpouring of love to the Full Moon one night. It is her way to honour and thank Grandmother Moon for her many blessings. It was written to hold medicine for all of Grandmother Moon’s phases, but is especially powerful on New Moon and Full Moon nights. Sing it as a gratitude song.

Translated by Verna DeMontigny

Ramant lii Riviere is a song that follows the journey of the Metis people along the rivers. From falling in love with the dream of a new life, to raising families on those riverbanks, to losing their lands to colonial policies.

Written by Andrea Menard
Translated by Jules Chartrand

Water Prayer Song is a prayer song for women+ all over the Metis Homeland, and all over the world. Women+, who are the lifegivers, are being asked to sing their water songs to bring healing to the waters and to the people. After hearing that so many Metis women didn’t know any water songs, Andrea created this song to fill that void. The Water Prayer Song has been translated into 4 languages, but she hopes this is just the beginning. It’s a giveaway. So take this song and translate it into YOUR language.

Translators:
Maureen Belanger – Cree Michif
Verna DeMontigny – Heritage Michif
Áine Seoighe – Irish
Pascale Chartrand-Goodrich/Dianne Demarcke – French

Nipi Nigamoonis means little water song. It is an intimate prayer song between you and Water. Again, this song is for the women+ who are looking to start singing their water songs to bring healing to all.

Translated by Maureen Belanger

Memmere’s Rubaboo is a storytelling ballad, told mostly in English. It follows a strong, fictional, Michif Matriarch from the early 1900’s who deals with the law in her own way. It’s poignant and funny and educational, with a Michif chorus for practise. There are always great teachings available when we pay attention to how our Matriarchs handle conflict.

Translated by Marjorie Beaucage

Sing Like a Fiddle is a fun community song. It is a throwback to community dances where all the furniture is moved out and everyone is gathered in one room around the fiddle. The song pokes fun at that one tipsy relative, who wishes they could do what the fiddler does.

Translated by Paul Chartrand

Nitootimuk (Visiting Song) is a prayer to the Spirits and Nature Keepers who dwell in the sacred places. When you become open and aware, you can feel the life, vitality and beauty present in nature. By thanking the Beings who keep these places pristine and profound, you actively participate in sustaining health and wellness for all. It is a song of reciprocity. Like putting down tobacco, you sing this song to give back to those who give to you unconditionally.

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Description

This compilation of prayer and community songs is called Anskoonamakew lii Shansoon, which means Giveaway Songs. Andrea Menard spent a year meeting and working with various Elders and Language Keepers across the Métis Homeland to create 12 new Michif language songs.

As the Métis were a traveling people, the Michif language is a “traveling” language. Most Métis were multi-lingual and communicated with the various peoples who lived in and near the communities and trade routes. These songs reflect the diversity and ways in which Michif has been influenced across the Homeland.

Andrea wrote this collection of Michif songs to preserve the language and to gift the next generation of speakers with a learning resource that becomes another teaching tool while honouring those who retained the language. As Andrea says, “A giveaway is a powerful statement of trust. To trust in Creator. To trust in reciprocity. To trust that good actions flow back to you in good way. I trust that these twelve giveaway songs will travel out in a good way for the betterment of our people.” Andrea also honours Elders Tom McCallum and Verna DeMontigny for providing the name for this collection of twelve Michif language songs. A heartfelt, kishchi maarsii to all of the Elders and Language Keepers for their generous contributions.

This album was created with the support of the Gabriel Dumont Institute and the Canada Council for the Arts.

For more information about the album and language keepers, visit Andrea Menard’s website: https://andreamenard.com/michifalbum

Watch video introductions to each song on the Gabriel Dumont Institute YouTube page: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLTK6TFLjjEcItpRfaBSFj8sBU2Q7yjclG

To listen online, watch introductions, and read lyrics, visit: https://www.metismuseum.ca/browse/index.php/13271

Michif Language Keepers
Graham Andrews
Marjorie Beaucage
Maureen Belanger
Jules Chartrand
Paul Chartrand
Verna DeMontigny
Tom McCallum

Track Listing:

Riel’s Prayer is a teaching song whispered to the Metis people from the Spirit realm. What would Riel want to say to you right now? He would want to remind you of who you are. To remember that you have the heart of the buffalo. And he would want you to be wary of the potential dangers in your midst.

Translated by Graham Andrews

Ayn Feu Shansoon (Fire Honour Song) is a song for the Sacred Masculine spirit. It’s a release song. It’s a song to honour the fiery power that resides in all of us, but was written especially to help men+, and those who carry Fire medicine, to find a way to express that fire safely. Sing this song and let it burn out of you.

Translated by Graham Andrews

Mahican Kita Oyoo (Wolf Healing Song) is a healing song. It calls out the pain and suffering in your heart to be released. Let it go. Release it to our Mother. And know the howling of the wolf is powerful medicine to help you howl out your own pain.

Translated by Tom McCallum

Kookoom La Leun is a prayer song for Grandmother Moon. It came to Andrea as an outpouring of love to the Full Moon one night. It is her way to honour and thank Grandmother Moon for her many blessings. It was written to hold medicine for all of Grandmother Moon’s phases, but is especially powerful on New Moon and Full Moon nights. Sing it as a gratitude song.

Translated by Verna DeMontigny

Ramant lii Riviere is a song that follows the journey of the Metis people along the rivers. From falling in love with the dream of a new life, to raising families on those riverbanks, to losing their lands to colonial policies.

Written by Andrea Menard
Translated by Jules Chartrand

Water Prayer Song is a prayer song for women+ all over the Metis Homeland, and all over the world. Women+, who are the lifegivers, are being asked to sing their water songs to bring healing to the waters and to the people. After hearing that so many Metis women didn’t know any water songs, Andrea created this song to fill that void. The Water Prayer Song has been translated into 4 languages, but she hopes this is just the beginning. It’s a giveaway. So take this song and translate it into YOUR language.

Translators:
Maureen Belanger – Cree Michif
Verna DeMontigny – Heritage Michif
Áine Seoighe – Irish
Pascale Chartrand-Goodrich/Dianne Demarcke – French

Nipi Nigamoonis means little water song. It is an intimate prayer song between you and Water. Again, this song is for the women+ who are looking to start singing their water songs to bring healing to all.

Translated by Maureen Belanger

Memmere’s Rubaboo is a storytelling ballad, told mostly in English. It follows a strong, fictional, Michif Matriarch from the early 1900’s who deals with the law in her own way. It’s poignant and funny and educational, with a Michif chorus for practise. There are always great teachings available when we pay attention to how our Matriarchs handle conflict.

Translated by Marjorie Beaucage

Sing Like a Fiddle is a fun community song. It is a throwback to community dances where all the furniture is moved out and everyone is gathered in one room around the fiddle. The song pokes fun at that one tipsy relative, who wishes they could do what the fiddler does.

Translated by Paul Chartrand

Nitootimuk (Visiting Song) is a prayer to the Spirits and Nature Keepers who dwell in the sacred places. When you become open and aware, you can feel the life, vitality and beauty present in nature. By thanking the Beings who keep these places pristine and profound, you actively participate in sustaining health and wellness for all. It is a song of reciprocity. Like putting down tobacco, you sing this song to give back to those who give to you unconditionally.

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